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Cuts, Guilt and Secrets Uncovered

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Jake Peralta had a secret. A secret that he had kept since high school and he had no plans to reveal however he works with a bunch of highly skilled detectives, so he has to work a lot harder to keep it to himself compared to when he was in high school. Despite the rough night before of slicing open his arms and thighs, he pulled on his usual long sleeve shirt and trousers and headed to work. Jake Peralta never had a day off. His habit had reached a new level these past few weeks and he's become more distant around his squad. They've started to notice.

The squad was in the bullpen waiting for Jake as always when Terry voiced his concerns. ''Hey guys? Have any of you noticed Jake being weird lately?''

Rosa walked past and sat on her desk, ''More than normal?''

Terry nodded but the elevator dinged and out walked Jake seeming to be in his own mind as he walked to his desk not noticing the squad watch him. He sat down and stared off into the distance. ''Hey Jake, you doing okay man? ... Jake?''

Jake looked up finally hearing his name plastering a fake smile on his face that didn't quite reach his eyes. ''Hmm?''

''You good?'' Jake nodded feeding them the lie that he was just tired as he had stayed up late trying to figure out one of his cases. Of course, he was tired but not because of a case, because he was up all-night crying in the dark watching the blood splash onto the floor. No one could know he reminded himself and excused himself to the bathroom. 

He sat on the toilet in one of the stalls and willed the tears to stay in his eyeballs as he dug his finger into one of his fresh cuts. He heard the door swing open and shut and then his name, again. ''Jake what's going on man there's obviously something bothering you...''

Jake was surprised to recognise the voice as Rosa. Rosa Dias the one person in the squad who he could count on to not talk feelings with. ''Rosa? You can't be in here it's the men's bathroom!''

Rosa kicked open the stall door just as Jake pulled down his sleeve. ''What were you doing?''

''Jeez Rosa, what if I was taking a dump?!'' Rosa looked him over.

''But you weren't instead you are sat in the bathroom fully clothed with red eyes. Peralta we are worried about you.''

Jake glared at her slightly. ''You don't need to be. Leave me alone.'' With that he barged past her and out of the men's bathroom. He squeezed his eyes shut for a moment. His urges were really bad despite the continuous stinging. He walked into the bull pen ignoring the concerned looks from all members of the team and walked out of the precinct. Captain Holt stood shocked and caught eyes with Rosa who entered shortly after. They communicated silently and went into his office.

20 minutes later Jake walked back into the precinct and collapsed in his chair. He was sat down for two minutes when the captain came out of his office. ''Jacob. My office.'' Jake sighed and hit his head on the desk before standing up.

His best friend Charles smiled at him, ''It's okay Jakey. I'll help you with your case after.'' Jake smiled and nodded at him making his way to Holt's office.

The captain directed him to the seat in front of him and they sat in silence for a minute. ''Jacob, it has been brought to my attention that you haven't been yourself lately and I have noticed it too...''

''Jesus what does a guy have to do around here to be left alone. I'm tired captain, I've had a lot of difficult cases recently.'' 

Holt did not look impressed. ''So, you wouldn't mind lifting your sleeve for me.'' Jake's heart stopped. No. He couldn't know. There's no way.

Jake scoffed and stared at his Captain. ''What?''

Holt raised his eyebrow at him. ''You heard me Jacob one of the detectives raised their suspicions and I can't help but agree.''

Jake was outraged, his friends had turned on him. ''Agree with what this is ludicrous! It was Rosa wasn't it! She came into the men's bathroom that's against the rules!''

''Jacob.''

''No.'' 

''Peralta, I understand this a sensitive issue but if you do not show me your arms, I will be forced to suspend you and submit you for a psych evaluation.'' Jake did not know how he was going to get out of this one. He knew the term; he was royally fucked.

He got hit with an overwhelming sense of anger and stormed out of the office. ''Rosa! You just couldn't handle it could you! Not being the only one with secrets! Well fuck you! -''

''Jacob! That's enough return to my office at once.'' 

''No. Screw this, screw all of you. You want my badge and gun here have it!'' Jake slammed his items onto the desk and once again walked out of the precinct. Captain Holt sighed and looked around. 

''He needs help. It's up to us.''

Jake went for a walk; he didn't care that it was one of the coldest days of Brooklyn winter he walked for miles. He walked in circles and finally when he could no longer feel his fingers or toes, he went back to his apartment. He didn't expect to see the captain at his door but ignored him and unlocked the door. ''Peralta where have you been?''

''You know you are supposed to be invited to someone's apartment right and not stalk them either.''

''As a concern for your safety someone has to be with you until you are evaluated.''

''Oh, this is bullshit! So, I had a rough few weeks why can't everyone leave me alone!'' Jake slammed his door shut leaving a worried Captain stood in his living room. The captain however understood that Jake was suffering and closed the door to the apartment and sitting on the couch. He and Jake had become close since he had started working at the 99th precinct and Raymond had come to think of Peralta as his son. It hurt to see him like this. Every 15 minutes Raymond opened the door Jake had previously slammed to make sure Jake was alright. Jake was closed into himself on the bed but not in immediate danger. On the 45-minute mark when Captain Holt went back to check the room Jake wasn't where he was the past 3 times. He saw a connecting door and there was a light shining through the crack on the floor. 

He knocked and waited for a response. ''Peralta? Peralta are you okay?''

There was none. Worry flooded the captain, and he made a quick decision to kick the door down. He wasn't as young as he used to be, but he didn't regret it when he saw Jake leant against the bathtub eyes closed and blood dripping from his wrists. ''Jacob! No!'' He rung an ambulance quickly and applied pressure to the wounds with a wet cloth while he waited. He repeatedly tried to get a response from him, but the room remained silent until the paramedics arrived. It was a quick affair as they rushed to the hospital. Raymond's previously white captain shirt stained a blood red. 

The detective's shift was finishing in half an hour so alerted them to the situation. Not the whole situation but that Jake was injured, and they were now at the hospital. Charles and Amy were demanding answers over the phone, but Captain Holt gave them none. He didn't want to cause unnecessary risk as the team drove to the hospital.

There was a wait until they could see their beloved teammate any way. Holt wasn't even sure if he was still alive as much as it pained him to think. The other detectives arrived during the time. 

Finally, someone came out to update them. 

Dr Karev had been the doctor to stitch Jake up. ''He's okay now. He lost a lot of blood but he's having a blood transfusion as we speak. You can see him but he's heavily sedated and will need to be kept on a 72-hour psychiatric hold.'' The team nodded just relieved their teammate was okay. They visited daily and Raymond visited every hour when he could. 

After 24 hours Jake was no longer sedated and felt guilty about it all. He didn't appreciate being in a hospital, but he understood why. Holt confirmed as long as he was in therapy, and it was safe to do so he could return to work once his hold was up, but he would have daily check ins with him.

It became a bit easier after that, sure his darkest secret had been revealed and he had his bad days. But he had a family, one that cared about him and helped him through those bad days.